Post-dispositional Advocacy

Helping Youth Achieve Success in the Future

Providing unrepresented youth with access to lawyers is a core mission of the Children and Family Justice Center. Each year, CFJC faculty, staff and students represent young people on a wide range of matters which arise as a result of their involvement in the juvenile and criminal justice systems.

The most frequent types of cases include expunging and sealing juvenile records, removing youth from the juvenile sex offender registry and pursuing a resentencing for a person serving juvenile life without parole.

Expungement and Sealing: In recognition of the unfairness of life-long juvenile records, Illinois law does allow individuals to seal or expunge their records. To help young people wipe their records clean, CFJC attorneys and students help guide them through the maze of requirements.

Removal from Juvenile Sex Offender Registry: CFJC's attorneys have represented dozens of youth seeking to terminate their requirement to register as a juvenile sex offender. In addition to direct representation, CFJC has developed a comprehensive manual and sample pleadings to assist other pro bono advocates.

Fair Sentencing of Children: CFJC helped form the Illinois Coalition for the Fair Sentencing of Children, a group of attorneys, academics, child advocates, and concerned citizens committed to ensuring the fair treatment of children in our juvenile and criminal justice systems. CFJC attorneys and students, through the Coalition, take a multifaceted approach to this issue — through litigation, policy reform, and outreach.